One of the oldest cities in America, Boston, Massachusetts has historic sites dating back to the Revolutionary War. There are colonial buildings downtown, brownstones in Beacon Hill and Back Bay, and preserved mansions now housing museums or shops. Though it is arguably one of the most historical and cultural cities in the U.S., Boston is far from a museum. Modern skyscrapers stretch up into the skyline; it is a leading medical, high-tech and financial center with numerous institutions of higher learning, and is also great for shopping.
Founded in 1630, Boston thrives on diversity and being first as much as possible. It is home to the first publicly supported library, public school, subway system, and the citywide First Night (New Year’s Eve) celebration to name a few on its long list of nation’s first’s. Boston truly has it all. Everywhere you go in Boston there’s history. Many famous American historical events, such as the Boston Tea Party and the ride of Paul Revere, happened here. There are trolley tours, Segway tours, and Duck tours to choose from in order to see it all, or you can visit the Prudential Center Skywalk Observatory and enjoy the 360 degree views of the city.
Those are all great ways to see Boston but, as tourists discover almost immediately on arriving from their flights, this is a great city for walking (and there are tours for that too!). Grab your best pair of walking shoes and get ready to hit the city streets. Take a tip from Bostonians: the quickest way to see the city is by following the red brick path known as the Freedom Trail. The Freedom Trail is a 2.5 mile walking trail of the city that makes stops at a number of famous and historic sites. Along the Freedom Trail, tourists will encounter museums, churches, graveyards, ships and historic markers that help recreate the history of the nation, starting with the American Revolution. Some of these sites include the location of the Boston Massacre, Paul Revere House, Old North Church, and U.S.S. Constitution. The walk can be done as a self-guided tour or with a tour guide dressed in period costume. The Old State House is particularly important as it’s the first place the Declaration of Independence was read out to the public. The Black Heritage Trail is another excellent and important walk, all about the history of black people and slavery in the United States. Also be sure to wander through Boston Common, where late night concerts and plays often take place in the summer months.
Book a trip to Boston during the spring and you’ll be welcomed by blooming flowers in the Boston Public Gardens. Spring also signals the start to baseball season, so baseball fans book Boston flights purely to see Fenway Park and cheer on the Boston Red Sox. Aside from the Sox, basketball and hockey fans can catch a Celtics or Bruins game. Football fans can take a short drive or train ride down to Foxboro, Massachusetts to watch the New England Patriots. If you happen to reserve a rental car when you book your Boston escape be sure to also drive the coastline south to Cape Cod for some of the best New England beaches, or north to Maine for awe-inspiring colors in fall.
Boston truly is one of the most historical cities in the country. Don’t let the skyscrapers fool you – Boston flights enter you into a world of old brick buildings and narrow walkways that recall centuries of American history. It is also home to many bars, restaurants, events, and much more. No matter what your reason for visiting is, or how long you are planning to stay in Boston, here are some tips to help you plan and enjoy the smoothest possible trip.
Boston has four seasons: winter, spring, summer and fall. Spring and fall are the best times to visit Boston; sunny days with typically pleasant temperatures, and cool nights, along with some rain (especially in spring) are the norm in Boston from March to May and September through November.
Winter can be brutal in Boston. Snow is plentiful in the city and the cold air can be bitter at times; don’t be surprised by well below freezing temperatures. Travelers looking for cheap plane tickets to Boston are sure to find some deals during the winter months of December, January and February, if you can endure the weather.
Summer, which is generally from June through July, is hot and steamy in the city and usually high tourist season. Not many airfare deals can be found on trips to Boston during the summer, but if you plan ahead it’s possible to get rates on cheap hotels and flights.
Lastly, watch out for the “Nor’easters”. This term is used to describe coastal storms that bring heavy rain and snow,depending on the season and temperature.
The major peak season is from June to September, with July and August seeing most of the tourists. The days are very warm and sunny during this time. As such you’ll struggle to find cheap flights to Boston over the summer, and the city will be very crowded. A great time to book your flights to Boston for is during the spring and fall months. The weather is pleasant, the city is in full swing and most of the tourists have either yet to arrive or gone home. You might get the occasional day of rain but generally it is sunny. You might not get the cheapest flight to Boston during this time, but you’ll be experiencing the city at its best. Search for flights in the fall so you can take a drive through New England and watch the colors change. Flights to Boston in the spring are generally more expensive because the tourist season is ramping up.
You will also want to be aware of the many events that Boston holds each year, as these can influence the price and availability of flights and hotels. Attracting thousands of people every year, celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in Boston is a remarkable and unforgettable experience. From parades to pub crawls, to parties to Irish cooking lessons, there is something to tickle everyone’s taste buds at the second largest St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in America. Many tourists book flights to Boston for this holiday alone.
The Boston Marathon is an annual event that is held on Patriots Day, the third Monday of April. Ranked as the world’s oldest marathon, its reputation as one of the best-known road racing events attracts around hundreds of thousands of spectators yearly. The track covers just over 26 miles of the city creating an enthusiastic, buzzing and united atmosphere, however results in major road closures and disruptions to travel.
For decades, every September visitors and locals book flights to Boston to watch an array of creative film categories such as short films, animation and documentaries at the Boston Film Festival. The event showcases a variety of talents from up-and-coming artists to renowned filmmakers. Alongside enjoying the films, attendees are invited to join a discussion and Q&A session with many of the producers, directors and actors.
Boston gets cold in the winter, and thus November to February are the quietest months of the year. However, if you’re looking for cheap airline tickets to Boston, traveling in the winter is your best bet. Just be aware that there is great chance you might have to deal with some snow and occasional rain.
Book your flights to Boston three-to-four months in advance if you can and aim for the spring or autumn to get the most out of your trip. Those booking Boston flights in September and October get to experience the glorious fall foliage. The summer is also a good time to visit but the lack of tourists in spring and fall are great. However, if you plan to travel to Boston during the summer months or to view the turning of the leaves in fall, it’s wise to book your Boston flight and hotel months in advance to secure the best rate.
If you are flexible with when you can visit then you’ll find the cheapest flights to Boston, although they are normally found in the winter, when the snow is heavy and the wind is cold. If you can book early enough and aren’t too bothered about events and festivals, you can find good deals on flight tickets during the warmer months of the year. Whatever season you book your trip to Boston, you’re sure to leave this quaint New England city with a lifetime of memories.
Located on the Northeast coast of the U.S., Boston is a seventy-minute gate-to-gate flight from New York City, a two-hour flight from Chicago and an approximately five-and-a-half-hour flight from Los Angeles. International travelers reach Boston from London’s Heathrow Airport in just over seven hours.
Logan International Airport is the largest transportation center in New England, served by all major U.S. carriers including American Airlines, Delta, JetBlue, Southwest, United and Virgin America. Many international carriers also serve Logan, including Air Berlin, Air Canada, Air France, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Emirates, Japan Airlines, Lufthansa, Qatar Airways and Virgin Atlantic.
Boston is famed for its beautiful changing seasons, from snowy winters to sultry summers. During winter, pull out your warmest winter coat to stay toasty, along with sweaters, hats, gloves and water-proof boots to tromp through the snow. For summer visits, short-sleeved shirts and shorts are the most practical, but toss in a few light sweaters and long slacks for cool evenings. The city is most temperate in the spring and autumn, when the days are typically in the 60’s and 70’s. Pack long-sleeved shirts and a light jacket. April and October are the trickiest months to predict, when balmy weather can turn cold overnight. Come prepared with light clothing that you can easily layer.
Public transport is your bet way of getting to the city center from Logan International Airport (BOS). You can take the Silver Line rapid transit bus from outside of the baggage claim to Downtown Boston and it is free. One of the stops on this route is South Station, and there are several different buses and trains you can take from there depending on which direction you are heading. You can also take the Red Line from South Station, which is the subway or “T” as it’s known in Boston. You can use the Red Line to connect to other subway lines across the city (there are 4 – the Red, Blue, Green and Orange). You can also take a shuttle bus from outside of the baggage claim to the Blue Line Airport Station; from there you can take the subway to other stations on the Blue Line. Connections are available to the Orange Line from the Blue Line at State Station, and to the Green Line at Government Center Station. You can also find other local buses as well taxis outside the arrivals. Taxis will take you direct to your hotel or accommodation, however, they are quite expensive in Boston so just be prepared. Lastly, you could also rent a car to get where you are going, but don’t bother unless you’re planning to go outside the city as traffic can be a nightmare in and around Boston.
Once you’ve settled in to your hotel, you are probably ready to explore the city. Boston has plenty of ways to get around, including the world’s oldest subway system, buses, trolley buses, ferries and commuter rail. The quickest, easiest and safest way to travel around Boston is the subway, otherwise known as the “T.” The subway will get you almost anywhere, and while the bus is cheaper, it can be much more confusing. Both the bus and subway run from early in the morning to after midnight. It’s easiest to get a travel pass, called a Charlie Card, for getting around, since different types of transportation require different tokens. Taxis are easy to find but can be very costly.
A trip to Boston isn’t complete until you connect with the city’s rich history. The Freedom Trail invites locals and tourists to visit historic sites while strolling through the city. Follow the red line along the 2.5-mile trail, which takes you from Bunker Hill Monument in Charlestown to the Boston Common, passing the U.S.S. Constitution, Old North Church, the Old State House and a few other historic destinations along the way.
The walkable city streets offer new sights, too. Sample from the menus at foodie destinations in Back Bay, shop for luxury brands along Newbury Street or explore the boutiques around Harvard Square. When you need a break, the city’s emerald parks await. Explore the Victorian grounds at the Public Garden, the country’s first public botanical garden. Here you can stop to smell the roses or ride the famed Swam Boats through the scenic lagoon.
Boston breeds champions on the field, from the New England Patriots to the Boston Bruins, the Boston Celtics and the Red Sox. Take in a ball game at Fenway, football at the Gillette Stadium in nearby Foxboro, and ice hockey or basketball at the Boston Garden. The streets around the stadiums located in Boston also offer plenty of entertainment, before and after the game.
Art lovers should visit the Museum of Fine Arts, where the vast permanent collection ranges from ancient artifacts to contemporary art, including John Singleton Copley’s famous painting of Paul Revere. Over at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, art aficionados find a small but immaculate collection curated by the museum’s namesake. Designed to feel more like a home than an institution, the historic building houses such jewels as Titian’s “Europa” and an early self-portrait by Rembrandt.
Theater-goers can catch Shakespeare at the Shubert, musicals at the Boston Opera House or Wang Theatre, and new plays at the American Repertory Theater. Boston Symphony Hall offers world-class acoustics for classical music concerts.
Those looking to leave Beantown for new vistas have their pick of destinations from all around the world. Find great deals on flights heading out of Boston with the help of Cheapflights. Many of the same carriers that fly into Boston also fly out of it, including American, Delta, Southwest, and JetBlue, to name just a few.
Here are some trip ideas to get you started:
When it’s time to leave to the airport, save some cash by taking the free Silver Line bus shuttle to the airport. Operated by the MBTA, the Silver Line departs from South Station from approximately 5:30 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. Just be sure to board a Logan-bound SL1 bus, as the line splits into two destinations. For service from the greater Boston area, the Logan Express operates bus shuttles to the airport from Back Bay, Braintree, Framingham, Peabody and Woburn.
Once you choose a destination, be sure to check out our Boston airport guides for more detailed travel information and helpful tips.